How Fascism Works

Stanley Jason

Published by Penguin Books, 2018
ISBN 10: 0525511830 / ISBN 13: 9780525511830
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pp. 240. Seller Inventory # 370289118

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Synopsis: “A vital read for a nation under Trump.”­—The Guardian
 
“By placing Trump in transnational and transhistorical perspective, Stanley sees patterns that others miss. . . . Twenty months into Trump’s presidency, the evidence is mounting that he’s right.”—The New York Times Book Review (Editors’ Choice)

Fascist politics are running rampant in America today—and spreading around the world. A Yale philosopher identifies the ten pillars of fascist politics, and charts their horrifying rise and deep history.


As the child of refugees of World War II Europe and a renowned philosopher and scholar of propaganda, Jason Stanley has a deep understanding of how democratic societies can be vulnerable to fascism: Nations don’t have to be fascist to suffer from fascist politics. In fact, fascism’s roots have been present in the United States for more than a century. Alarmed by the pervasive rise of fascist tactics both at home and around the globe, Stanley focuses here on the structures that unite them, laying out and analyzing the ten pillars of fascist politics—the language and beliefs that separate people into an “us” and a “them.” He knits together reflections on history, philosophy, sociology, and critical race theory with stories from contemporary Hungary, Poland, India, Myanmar, and the United States, among other nations. He makes clear the immense danger of underestimating the cumulative power of these tactics, which include exploiting a mythic version of a nation’s past; propaganda that twists the language of democratic ideals against themselves; anti-intellectualism directed against universities and experts; law and order politics predicated on the assumption that members of minority groups are criminals; and fierce attacks on labor groups and welfare. These mechanisms all build on one another, creating and reinforcing divisions and shaping a society vulnerable to the appeals of authoritarian leadership.

By uncovering disturbing patterns that are as prevalent today as ever, Stanley reveals that the stuff of politics—charged by rhetoric and myth—can quickly become policy and reality. Only by recognizing fascists politics, he argues, may we resist its most harmful effects and return to democratic ideals.

“With unsettling insight and disturbing clarity, How Fascism Works is an essential guidebook to our current national dilemma of democracy vs. authoritarianism.”—William Jelani Cobb, author of The Substance of Hope

About the Author: Jason Stanley is the Jacob Urowsky Professor of Philosophy at Yale University. He is the author of five books, including How Propaganda Works, winner of the Prose Award in Philosophy from the Association of American Publishers, and How Fascism Works: The Politics of Us and Them, called by historian Jan T. Gross a “must-read for all of us who take seriously our responsibility as citizens.” Stanley serves on the board of the Prison Policy Initiative and writes frequently about propaganda, free speech, mass incarceration, democracy, and authoritarianism for The New York TimesThe Washington PostBoston ReviewThe Chronicle of Higher Education, and Project Syndicate.

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Bibliographic Details

Title: How Fascism Works
Publisher: Penguin Books
Publication Date: 2018
Binding: Hardcover
Book Condition: New

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